Changing The Water Filter

As you will remember, the handyman committed suicide. And his memory is sticking with me, but it’s astounding how life moves on, how the big wheels keep on turnin’, if you’re thinking of checking out, don’t, you’re gonna miss so much. Not that any of it’s important. That’s what you learn as life goes on, what you believed to be satisfying is not. The pleasure of career achievement lasts a day or two. Sex without love…talk to those with stories but no satisfaction. You learn to take pleasure in the day to day, the small accomplishments, like changing the refrigerator water filter.

The light came on. I couldn’t handle it. I need everything to run right. Right now I’m troubled by losing my receive mail sound in El Capitan. That’s right, I upgraded and I got silence. Sure, I get the growl in the upper right-hand corner of my computer screen, but I need the sound, I live for my mail. And I went online and everybody was complaining. How could Apple upgrade and lose something I took for granted? I’m waiting to upgrade my MacBook Pro until they fix it.

So, used to be that Peter replaced the water filter.

But do you need an expert to do so?

I could press the button and turn off the light, but that would just mask the underlying problem, the filter was used up. Or was it? Felice doesn’t think it needs changing that often.

But I do.

And that light kept staring and staring at me until I decided to take action.

I couldn’t do it alone, because the model number was so long. I could stick my head in the fridge, but I couldn’t write it down at the same time, this was a two man job. Or man and woman. Or Felice and me.

And when the going gets rough, I get scared. I’m a man of action, eventually, but right away? EEGADS!

But I reached my limit with the light and I called to Felice and I had her write down a number with enough digits and letters to foil any hacker. And then I went on Amazon, and VOILA! The filter popped right up.

Not that I immediately bought it, that would be too easy. Was it really the right filter, was it sold direct from Amazon? You want the latter, in case you’ve got to return it.

But then I clicked to buy.

And it came.

But now I had to install it.

Was I really up to the job? Should Felice call someone else? Days were passing, but now it was the weekend…I had to take action.

But Felice is manual-challenged.

I’m a guy. I’ve got manuals for products that I no longer own! But as soon as a product arrives Felice tosses the packaging, had she tossed the fridge manual too?

Well, she couldn’t find it.

Which meant I had to go to the web. A great savior. But the YouTube videos didn’t show the right model. And they were littered with so many caveats I got scared. Do I really have to unplug the damn thing? And put down a towel for water leaks? I mean can I electrocute myself and flood the house at the same time?

It’s possible…

And finally I got a clip of a similar fridge, but not identical, and they said to turn off the icemaker. But their button was in a different place. I was digging my hole deeper.

And then I called out to Felice for help. I needed to write down the serial number from inside the fridge again. Which seemed inaccurate, because it was the same number for the water filter, but she wrote it down and I plugged it into Google and I got the manual.


Not really.

You see there’s a handyman code. They don’t want to reveal all their secrets. They don’t want to tell you everything. They want you to rely on them. There was some information in the online manual, but not all.

Turns out removing the filter was easy. Reinstalling the cap too. But looking at the new filter I saw there was an up and a down, in which direction should I install it? What if it slid in and didn’t filter, the manual said you could run the fridge without a filter whatsoever, then all my effort would come to nothing, and I might get Giardia and why do we need a water filter anyway, isn’t what comes from the pipe clean enough?

And the old filter was extremely heavy. The new one light as a feather. Could they really be the same?

And there were installation instructions on the old and none on the new. Which raised my anxiety and had me convinced I was in over my head.

But then I noticed grooves on the tube. Maybe it would go in one way only.

But it turned out it wouldn’t go in any way at all!

And if I push it I break it. And there’s nothing in the manual about insertion direction. And then, counterintuitively I turn the cylinder on its side…and it slides right in.

Well, enough of the sexual metaphors.

I thought my work was done, but the manual said to refer to the section about flushing the system.

Huh? This is way too much! One of the YouTube videos had water pouring and I was in over my head and now the filter is installed but I still have to call a handyman/plumber?

So I read the instructions, which are vague. Like I told you, you’re supposed to know how to do this.

And then I dove right in.

It said to get a large container, but I figured a glass was good enough. But I pushed the lever and the system farted and water started to spray and thank god I could pull away and stop the effusiveness.

This was harder than it looked.

I got a bigger glass. You had to go on and off every five seconds until you got an even flow, thanks Pearl Jam. But this happened within thirty seconds! But now I had to do it for another two minutes. And the glass is filling and I’m worried about using too much water, we’ve got a drought here, you know. And I thought I was through and then it farted again and then…

It worked perfectly.

And this extreme sense of satisfaction coursed throughout my entire body. Like I’d climbed my own personal Everest.

I knew I could do this. I’d been preparing for it my whole life. I’m someone who can read the instructions and follow through. Which is probably why I can’t play video games, since they come with no manual. And, like I said, the refrigerator manual was vague, but I persevered.

And when I went to toss the old filter and considered its weight once again I started to wonder, is this what was in our water?

Ah, the mysteries of modern life.

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